Before joining the European Commission he worked in Italy, UK and Switzerland, mostly in the academic and research environment. He joined the European Commission in 2002, initially as supervisor of research projects. He has been worked on in Space aspects and helped define the European Space Policy from its early days in concluding agreements with ESA and in drafting and including article 189 (EU Space Competence) in the Lisbon Treaty. He has been Head of the Space Research Unit for the EU financing of space activities and then Head for the development and implementation of the European Earth observation programme initially known as GMES and later Copernicus. He is currently the Head of Unit in charge for Earth Observation at the European Commission. Mauro Facchini is Italian and has an engineering background with a PhD in Mechanical Engineering.